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  1. Mindsponge Theory.Quan-Hoang Vuong - 2022 - Hanoi, Vietnam: AISDL.
    As humans, we use the power of thinking to make scientific discoveries, develop technologies, manage social interactions, and transmit knowledge to the next generations. With the ability to think, we can trace back and discover the origin of the universe, the natural world, and ourselves. The content of this book, Mindsponge Theory, is part of that discovery process.
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  2. Scientific Humility: Scientific Honesty – Hypothesis and Science.Bhakti Madhava Puri - 2009 - Darwin Under Siege.
    It is not that scientists make an hypothesis first, and then try to find the data to fit that hypothesis. Rather, the process is first observation, then an hypothes is made to describe the data, then conclude that the data has been described by the hypothesis. But this is not an explanation of the phenomenon. It is merely a description of the data in different terms, usually mathematics. It is essentially a tautology. Thus to observe various points and connect them (...)
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  3. The Logic of Life.Bhakti Madhava Puri - 2008 - Science and Scientist.
    Modern science generally assumes that the same laws of logic apply to mechanical, chemical and biological entities alike because they are all ultimately material objects. This may seem to be so obvious that there would be no need to validate it -- experimentally or logically. In this article we would like to critically examine this assumption and show that from an experiential/observational level, as well as from a rational/logical level, it is not valid. This becomes apparent, for instance, when we (...)
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  4. From Obesity to Energy Metabolism: Ontological Perspectives on the Metrics of Human Bodies.Davide Serpico & Andrea Borghini - 2020 - Topoi 40 (3):577-586.
    In this paper, we aim at rethinking the concept of obesity in a way that better captures the connection between underlying medical aspects, on the one hand, and an individual’s developmental history, on the other. Our proposal rests on the idea that obesity is not to be understood as a phenotypic trait or character; rather, obesity represents one of the many possible states of a more complex phenotypic trait that we call ‘energy metabolism.’ We argue that this apparently simple conceptual (...)
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  5. Michael Tomasello, Becoming Human: A Theory of Ontogeny, Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2019, Xi + 379 Pp, $35.00/£28.95/€31.50. [REVIEW]Ivan Gonzalez-Cabrera - 2020 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 42 (4):1-5.
    In this book, Michael Tomasello proposes an overarching theoretical framework that organizes the research that he and his colleagues at the Department of Developmental and Comparative Psychology of the Max Planck Institute in Leipzig have carried out for the past 20 years. The book is recommended for students and academics working on the evolution of human cognition, especially those interested in the intersection between evolutionary developmental biology and developmental psychology.
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  6. Life, Local Constraints and Meaning Generation. An Evolutionary Approach to Cognition (2015).Christophe Menant - manuscript
    The relations between life and cogntion have been addressed through different perspectives [Stewart 1996, Boden 2001, Bourgine and Stewart 2004, van Duijn & all 2006, Di Paolo 2009]. We would like here to address that subject by relating life to cognition through a process of meaning generation. Life emerged on earth as a far from thermodynamic equilibrium performance that had to maintain herself. Life is charactertized by a ‘stay alive’ constraint that has to be satisfied (such constraint can be included (...)
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  7. Peer Competition and Cooperation.Ivan Gonzalez-Cabrera - 2018 - In T. K. Shackelford & V. A. Weekes-Shackelford (eds.), Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science. Basel:
    Peer competition and peer cooperation can be intuitively seen as opposing phenomena. However, depending on multiple factors, they might be complementary. In a population divided into groups, for instance, members of each group may cooperate with their peers in order to compete with neighboring groups. Alternatively, they may compete with their peers as a means of choosing the best cooperative partners and demonstrate that they are reliable cooperative partners. For instance, if subjects can choose with whom they wish to interact, (...)
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  8. Beyond Quantitative and Qualitative Traits: Three Telling Cases in the Life Sciences.Davide Serpico - 2020 - Biology and Philosophy 35 (3):1-26.
    This paper challenges the common assumption that some phenotypic traits are quantitative while others are qualitative. The distinction between these two kinds of traits is widely influential in biological and biomedical research as well as in scientific education and communication. This is probably due to both historical and epistemological reasons. However, the quantitative/qualitative distinction involves a variety of simplifications on the genetic causes of phenotypic variability and on the development of complex traits. Here, I examine three cases from the life (...)
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  9. Developmental Biology as a Science of Dependent Co-Origination.Scott Gilbert - manuscript
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  10. Civilizational Structure of Regional Integration Organizations.Sergii Sardak & Y. Prysiazhniuk S. Sardak, S. Radziyevska - 2019 - Przegląd Strategiczny 12:59-79.
    The paper advances a new comprehensive complex approach to the investigation of the civilizational aspects in the development of regional associations of countries. The research starts with the overview of historical dimensions of the civilizational approach and the contribution of the founding scholars to its development. It continues with the analysis of the scientific and methodological input of the followers and the critics of this approach. The authors suggest their theoretical approach to the identification of the modern local civilizations according (...)
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  11. The Machine Conception of the Organism in Development and Evolution: A Critical Analysis.Daniel J. Nicholson - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 48:162-174.
    This article critically examines one of the most prevalent metaphors in modern biology, namely the machine conception of the organism (MCO). Although the fundamental differences between organisms and machines make the MCO an inadequate metaphor for conceptualizing living systems, many biologists and philosophers continue to draw upon the MCO or tacitly accept it as the standard model of the organism. This paper analyses the specific difficulties that arise when the MCO is invoked in the study of development and evolution. In (...)
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  12. Beeing & Time: Kiss of Chemoreception & the Bug in Dasein's Mouth.Virgil W. Brower - 2014 - In Laurence Talairach-Vielmas & Marie Bouchet (eds.), Insects in Literature & the Arts. Brussels, Belgium: pp. 197-217.
    "Brower explores the way philosophers were inspired by entomological social systems and communication to reflect on human psyche, social behavior, community organization, communication, and inter-individual relationships. His essay rehearses the swarms of insects embedded in contemporary philosophy and literary theory, not only showing how many of the major concepts (or philosophemes) in continental philosophy – sexuality, politics, thinking, time, interdependence, and language – draw lessons from the world of insects, but also illustrating again how the insect world spurred human reflection.".
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  13. The Plant Ontology Facilitates Comparisons of Plant Development Stages Across Species.Ramona Lynn Walls, Laurel Cooper, Justin Lee Elser, Maria Alejandra Gandolfo, Christopher J. Mungall, Barry Smith, Dennis William Stevenson & Pankaj Jaiswal - 2019 - Frontiers in Plant Science 10.
    The Plant Ontology (PO) is a community resource consisting of standardized terms, definitions, and logical relations describing plant structures and development stages, augmented by a large database of annotations from genomic and phenomic studies. This paper describes the structure of the ontology and the design principles we used in constructing PO terms for plant development stages. It also provides details of the methodology and rationale behind our revision and expansion of the PO to cover development stages for all plants, particularly (...)
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  14. Sechzehn Tage: Wann Beginnt Ein Menschliches Leben?Barry Smith & Berit Brogaard - 2006 - In Guido Imaguire & Christine Schneider (eds.), Untersuchungen zur Ontologie. Munich: Philosophia. pp. 3-40.
    Der Abschluß der Gastrulation, der gleichzeitig auch den Anfang der Neurulation bedeutet, ist die zeitliche Grenze, die Beginn eines menschlichen Individuums markiert. Oft wird behauptet, daß jegliche natürliche Veränderung stetig ist. Wie ist es dann aber möglich, eine zeitliche Grenze auszuzeichnen, an der ein menschliches Lebewesen zu existieren beginnt? Man beachte, was geschieht, wenn wir vom Thema zeitlicher Unstetigkeit zum räumlichen übergehen. Lebewesen haben räumliche Grenzen (wie sie durch ihre Haut geformt wird). Die letzteren sind genuine Diskontinuitäten, auch angesichts der (...)
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  15. Ontologie des Embryos: Wann Beginnt Menschliches Leben.Barry Smith & Berit Brogaard - 2007 - In L. Honnefelder & M. C. Schmidt (eds.), Naturalismus als Paradigma - Wie weit reicht die naturwissenschaftliche Erklärung des Menschen? , 2007,. Berlin: Berlin University Press. pp. 196-204.
    Der Abschluß der Gastrulation, der gleichzeitig auch den Anfang der Neurulation bedeutet, ist die zeitliche Grenze, die Beginn eines menschlichen Individuums markiert. Oft wird behauptet, daß jegliche natürliche Veränderung stetig ist. Wie ist es dann aber möglich, eine zeitliche Grenze auszuzeichnen, an der ein menschliches Lebewesen zu existieren beginnt? Man beachte, was geschieht, wenn wir vom Thema zeitlicher Unstetigkeit zum räumlichen übergehen. Lebewesen haben räumliche Grenzen (wie sie durch ihre Haut geformt wird). Die letzteren sind genuine Diskontinuitäten, auch angesichts der (...)
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  16. The Cell and Protoplasm as Container, Object, and Substance, 1835–1861.Daniel Liu - 2017 - Journal of the History of Biology 50 (4):889-925.
    (Recipient of the 2020 Everett Mendelsohn Prize.) This article revisits the development of the protoplasm concept as it originally arose from critiques of the cell theory, and examines how the term “protoplasm” transformed from a botanical term of art in the 1840s to the so-called “living substance” and “the physical basis of life” two decades later. I show that there were two major shifts in biological materialism that needed to occur before protoplasm theory could be elevated to have equal status (...)
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  17. Symmetry-Breaking Dynamics in Development.Noah Moss Brender - 2017 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 16 (4):585-596.
    Recognition of the plasticity of development — from gene expression to neuroplasticity — is increasingly undermining the traditional distinction between structure and function, or anatomy and behavior. At the same time, dynamic systems theory — a set of tools and concepts drawn from the physical sciences — has emerged as a way of describing what Maurice Merleau-Ponty calls the “dynamic anatomy” of the living organism. This article surveys and synthesizes dynamic systems models of development from biology, neuroscience, and psychology in (...)
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  18. Toolbox Murders: Putting Genes in Their Epigenetic and Ecological Contexts: P. Griffiths and K. Stotz: Genetics and Philosophy: An Introduction. [REVIEW]Thomas Pradeu - 2016 - Biology and Philosophy 31 (1):125-142.
    Griffiths and Stotz’s Genetics and Philosophy: An Introduction offers a very good overview of scientific and philosophical issues raised by present-day genetics. Examining, in particular, the questions of how a “gene” should be defined and what a gene does from a causal point of view, the authors explore the different domains of the life sciences in which genetics has come to play a decisive role, from Mendelian genetics to molecular genetics, behavioural genetics, and evolution. In this review, I highlight what (...)
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  19. The Embryo in Ancient Rabbinic Literature: Between Religious Law and Didactic Narratives: An Interpretive Essay.Etienne Lepicard - 2010 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 32 (1):21-41.
    At a time when bioethical issues are at the top of public and political agendas, there is a renewed interest in representations of the embryo in various religious traditions. One of the major traditions that have contributed to Western representations of the embryo is the Jewish tradition. This tradition poses some difficulties that may deter scholars, but also presents some invaluable advantages. These derive from two components, the search for limits and narrativity, both of which are directly connected with the (...)
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  20. The Individual in Biology and Psychology.Robert A. Wilson - 1999 - In V. Harcastle (ed.), Where Biology Meets Psychology. pp. 355--374.
    Individual organisms are obvious enough kinds of things to have been taken for granted as the entities that have many commonly attributed biological and psychological properties, both in common sense and in science. The sorts of morphological properties used by the folk to categorize individual animals and plants into common sense kinds (that's a dog; that's a rose), as well as the properties that feature as parts of phenotypes, are properties of individual organisms. And psychological properties, such as believing that (...)
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  21. Evolutionary Biology and Classical Teleological Arguments for God's Existence.James Dominic Rooney - 2013 - Heythrop Journal 54 (4):617-630.
    Much has been made of how Darwinian thinking destroyed proofs for the existence of God from ‘design’ in the universe. I challenge that prevailing view by looking closely at classical ‘teleological’ arguments for the existence of God. One version championed by Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas stems from how chance is not a sufficient kind of ultimate explanation of the universe. In the course of constructing this argument, I argue that the classical understanding of teleology is no less necessary in modern (...)
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  22. Some Problems for Alternative Individualism.Robert A. Wilson - 2000 - Philosophy of Science 67 (4):671-679.
    This paper points to some problems for the position that D.M. Walsh calls "alternative individualism," and argues that in defending this view Walsh has omitted an important part of what separates individualists and externalists in psychology. Walsh's example of Hox gene complexes is discussed in detail to show why some sort of externalism about scientific taxonomy more generally is a more plausible view than any extant version of individualism.
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Developmental Constraints
  1. Being Precise About Precision and One-to-One Specificity.Pierrick Bourrat - manuscript
    Following from my criticisms of Calcott’s analysis on the permissive/instructive distinction, I rebut his claims that 1) he clarifies my measure one-to-one specificity; 2) for all intents and purposes of his analysis his notion of precision is different from my measure of one- to-one specificity; 3) Waddington box is a better and different model than the extension of Woodward’s radio I propose.
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  2. Dispositional Properties in Evo-Devo.Christopher J. Austin & Laura Nuño de la Rosa - 2018 - In Laura Nuño de la Rosa & G. Müller (eds.), Evolutionary Developmental Biology. Cham, Switzerland: Springer.
    In identifying intrinsic molecular chance and extrinsic adaptive pressures as the only causally relevant factors in the process of evolution, the theoretical perspective of the Modern Synthesis had a major impact on the perceived tenability of an ontology of dispositional properties. However, since the late 1970s, an increasing number of evolutionary biologists have challenged the descriptive and explanatory adequacy of this “chance alone, extrinsic only” understanding of evolutionary change. Because morphological studies of homology, convergence, and teratology have revealed a space (...)
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  3. Towards a Morphogenetic Perspective on Cancer.Armando Aranda-Anzaldo - 2002 - Rivista di Biologia/Biology Forum 95:35-62.
    The purpose of this paper is to present a critique of the current view that reduces cancer to a cellular problem caused by specific gene mutations and to propose, instead, that such a problem might become more intelligible, if it is understood as a phenomenon that results from the breakdown of the morphological plan or Gestalt of the organism. Such and organism, in Aristotelian terms, is characterized for presenting a specific morphe or logos (form) and for having a telos (end) (...)
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  4. EvoDevo: die molekulare Entwicklungsbiologie als Schlüssel zum Verständnis der Evolutionstheorie.Paul Gottlob Layer - 2009 - Zeitschrift Für Pädagogik Und Theologie 61 (4):322-333.
    Darwin´s Erkenntnis über die Abstammung der Arten durch Mutation und Selektion sind in aller Munde, dass aber darüber im Detail noch viel Unklarheit herrscht, ist weniger bekannt. Es sind Fortschritte der Entwicklungsbiologie, die erst seit wenigen Jahren uns molekulare Erklärungsmuster an die Hand geben, mit denen die Entstehung neuer Arten besser verständlich wird. Es handelt sich um die Aufklärung der Wirkungsweise von Genen und ihren molekularen Produkten, die während der embryonalen Entwicklung von Tier und Mensch dafür sorgen, daß der Organismus (...)
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  5. Was ist Leben? - Von Zellen und anderen Lebewesen zwischen Genkonstanz und Umweltvarianz.Paul Gottlob Layer - 2007 - Arnoldshainer Texte - Der Etwas Andere Blick Auf Die Schöpfung 136:102-116.
    Bei der Suche nach dem rätselhaften Ursprung des Phänomens „Leben“ wird hier zunächst die zelluläre Ebene betrachtet. Im Grundaufbau zeigen alle Zellen viel Konstantes, aber gleichzeitig stellt jede Zelle ein einmaliges Individuum dar. Leben von Zellen gibt es nur als gegenseitiges Wechselspiel mit ihrer jeweiligen Umwelt. Das Genom (die Gesamtheit aller Gene) bleibt ab der Befruchtung in jeder Zelle eines Individuums konstant. Aber auch die Verwirklichung der Gene braucht eine „molekulare Umwelt“, besonders die vom Muttertier vorbereitete Umwelt im Zytoplasma des (...)
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  6. Eine neue Sicht der Evolution: Ist es nur der Zufall, der sie leitet?Paul Gottlob Layer - 2016 - BRIEFE Zur Orientierung Im Konflikt Mensch - Erde, Evangelische Akademie Sachsen-Anhalt E.V 121 (4):16-24.
    Nach neodarwinistischem Verständnis der Evolution entstehen neue Organismen letztlich durch rein zufällige Mutationsprozesse auf genetischer Ebene. Ihre Überlebenschancen werden dann durch die jeweilig herrschende Umwelt begünstigt oder unterdrückt. Die Evolution ist demnach nur vom reinen Zufall geleitet. Neuere Einsichten aus Entwicklungsbiologie (EvoDevo) und Epigenetik haben unsere Sicht der Evolutionsabläufe jedoch deutlich erweitert. Dabei kommt der Umwelt eine lenkende Rolle zu, der reine Zufall verliert an Bedeutung. Damit lässt sich naturwissenschaftliches Verständnis wieder besser mit herkömmlichen Schöpfungsbildern versöhnen.
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  7. Finding the Way in Phenotypic Space: The Origin and Maintenance of Constraints on Organismal Form.Massimo Pigliucci - 2007 - Annals of Botany 100:433-438.
    Background: One of the all-time questions in evolutionary biology regards the evolution of organismal shapes, and in particular why certain forms appear repeatedly in the history of life, others only seldom and still others not at all. Recent research in this field has deployed the conceptual framework of constraints and natural selection as measured by quantitative genetic methods. Scope: In this paper I argue that quantitative genetics can by necessity only provide us with useful statistical sum- maries that may lead (...)
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  8. Space: Negative Selection, Physical Constraint and Symmetry.Marvin E. Kirsh - manuscript
    A descriptive role is suggested for uracil as a temporal divide in the immediate aspects of metabolism verses long term maintained genetic transmission. In particular, details of the mechanism of excision repair of uracil from DNA based on differential parameters of spatial distortion of the planar uracil molecule within the DNA helix verses RNA, when viewed in analogy to a proposed model for space involving the substitution of the act of mirroring for the element of time in processes and a (...)
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Developmental Modularity
  1. Brains Emerging: On Modularity and Self-Organisation of Neural Development In Vivo and In Vitro.Paul Gottlob Layer - 2019 - In Lars H. Wegner & Ulrich Lüttge (eds.), Emergence and Modularity in Life Sciences. Springer Verlag. pp. 145-169.
    Molecular developmental biology has expanded our conceptions of gene actions, underpinning that embryonic development is not only governed by a set of specific genes, but as much by space–time conditions of its developing modules. Typically, formation of cellular spheres, their transformation into planar epithelia, followed by tube formations and laminations are modular steps leading to the development of nervous tissues. Thereby, actions of organising centres, morphogenetic movements, inductive events between epithelia, tissue polarity reversal, widening of epithelia, and all these occurring (...)
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  2. Dispositional Properties in Evo-Devo.Christopher J. Austin & Laura Nuño de la Rosa - 2018 - In Laura Nuño de la Rosa & G. Müller (eds.), Evolutionary Developmental Biology. Cham, Switzerland: Springer.
    In identifying intrinsic molecular chance and extrinsic adaptive pressures as the only causally relevant factors in the process of evolution, the theoretical perspective of the Modern Synthesis had a major impact on the perceived tenability of an ontology of dispositional properties. However, since the late 1970s, an increasing number of evolutionary biologists have challenged the descriptive and explanatory adequacy of this “chance alone, extrinsic only” understanding of evolutionary change. Because morphological studies of homology, convergence, and teratology have revealed a space (...)
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  3. Eine neue Sicht der Evolution: Ist es nur der Zufall, der sie leitet?Paul Gottlob Layer - 2016 - BRIEFE Zur Orientierung Im Konflikt Mensch - Erde, Evangelische Akademie Sachsen-Anhalt E.V 121 (4):16-24.
    Nach neodarwinistischem Verständnis der Evolution entstehen neue Organismen letztlich durch rein zufällige Mutationsprozesse auf genetischer Ebene. Ihre Überlebenschancen werden dann durch die jeweilig herrschende Umwelt begünstigt oder unterdrückt. Die Evolution ist demnach nur vom reinen Zufall geleitet. Neuere Einsichten aus Entwicklungsbiologie (EvoDevo) und Epigenetik haben unsere Sicht der Evolutionsabläufe jedoch deutlich erweitert. Dabei kommt der Umwelt eine lenkende Rolle zu, der reine Zufall verliert an Bedeutung. Damit lässt sich naturwissenschaftliches Verständnis wieder besser mit herkömmlichen Schöpfungsbildern versöhnen.
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  4. The Proximate–Ultimate Distinction and Evolutionary Developmental Biology: Causal Irrelevance Versus Explanatory Abstraction.Massimo Pigliucci & Raphael Scholl - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (5):653-670.
    Mayr’s proximate–ultimate distinction has received renewed interest in recent years. Here we discuss its role in arguments about the relevance of developmental to evolutionary biology. We show that two recent critiques of the proximate–ultimate distinction fail to explain why developmental processes in particular should be of interest to evolutionary biologists. We trace these failures to a common problem: both critiques take the proximate–ultimate distinction to neglect specific causal interactions in nature. We argue that this is implausible, and that the distinction (...)
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  5. The Plant Ontology as a Tool for Comparative Plant Anatomy and Genomic Analyses.Laurel Cooper, Ramona Walls, Justin Elser, Maria A. Gandolfo, Dennis W. Stevenson, Barry Smith & Others - 2013 - Plant and Cell Physiology 54 (2):1-23..
    The Plant Ontology (PO; http://www.plantontology.org/) is a publicly-available, collaborative effort to develop and maintain a controlled, structured vocabulary (“ontology”) of terms to describe plant anatomy, morphology and the stages of plant development. The goals of the PO are to link (annotate) gene expression and phenotype data to plant structures and stages of plant development, using the data model adopted by the Gene Ontology. From its original design covering only rice, maize and Arabidopsis, the scope of the PO has been expanded (...)
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  6. Between Holism and Reductionism: A Philosophical Primer on Emergence.Massimo Pigliucci - 2013 - Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 112 (2):261-267.
    Ever since Darwin a great deal of the conceptual history of biology may be read as a struggle between two philosophical positions: reductionism and holism. On the one hand, we have the reductionist claim that evolution has to be understood in terms of changes at the fundamental causal level of the gene. As Richard Dawkins famously put it, organisms are just ‘lumbering robots’ in the service of their genetic masters. On the other hand, there is a long holistic tradition that (...)
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  7. August Weismann on Germ-Plasm Variation.Rasmus Grønfeldt Winther - 2001 - Journal of the History of Biology 34 (3):517-555.
    August Weismann is famous for having argued against the inheritance of acquired characters. However, an analysis of his work indicates that Weismann always held that changes in external conditions, acting during development, were the necessary causes of variation in the hereditary material. For much of his career he held that acquired germ-plasm variation was inherited. An irony, which is in tension with much of the standard twentieth-century history of biology, thus exists – Weismann was not a Weismannian. I distinguish three (...)
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  8. Varieties of Modules: Kinds, Levels, Origins, and Behaviors.Rasmus Grønfeldt Winther - 2001 - Journal of Experimental Zoology 291:116-129.
    This article began as a review of a conference, organized by Gerhard Schlosser, entitled “Modularity in Development and Evolution.” The conference was held at, and sponsored by, the Hanse Wissenschaftskolleg in Delmenhorst, Germany in May, 2000. The article subsequently metamorphosed into a literature and concept review as well as an analysis of the differences in current perspectives on modularity. Consequently, I refer to general aspects of the conference but do not review particular presentations. I divide modules into three kinds: structural, (...)
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Developmental Systems Theory
  1. Does the Problem of Variability Justify Barrett’s Emotion Revolution?Raamy Majeed - forthcoming - Review of Philosophy and Psychology:1-21.
    The problem of variability concerns the fact that empirical data does not support the existence of a coordinated set of biological markers, either in the body or the brain, which correspond to our folk emotion categories; categories like anger, happiness, sadness, disgust and fear. Barrett (2006a, b, 2013, 2016, 2017a, b) employs this fact to argue (i) against the faculty psychology approach to emotion, e.g. emotions are the products of emotion-specific mechanisms, or “modules”, and (ii) for the view that emotions (...)
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  2. Rethinking Hereditary Relations: The Reconstitutor as the Evolutionary Unit of Heredity.Sophie J. Veigl, Javier Suárez & Adrian Stencel - 2022 - Synthese 200 (5):1-42.
    This paper introduces the reconstitutor as a comprehensive unit of heredity within the context of evolutionary research. A reconstitutor is the structure resulting from a set of relationships between different elements or processes that are actively involved in the recreation of a specific phenotypic variant in each generation regardless of the biomolecular basis of the elements or whether they stand in a continuous line of ancestry. Firstly, we justify the necessity of introducing the reconstitutor by showing the limitations of other (...)
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  3. The Relevance of Mathematics to Brain Functioning.Brian D. Josephson - manuscript
    The slides of a talk given at the Cavendish Laboratory in 2001, relating brain function to concepts such as hyperstructure theory (Baas), Memory Evolutive Systems (Ehresmann), and representational redescription (A Karmiloff-Smith).
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  4. A Class of Reaction-Diffusion Mechanisms Which Preferentially Select Striped Patterns.Michael Lyons & Lionel G. Harrison - 1991 - Chemical Physics Letters 183 (1,2):158-164.
    Reaction-diffusion systems which have reaction term satisfying f(-q) = -f(q) tend strongly to form striped patterns. Haken’s slaving principle is used to derive differential equations for unstable mode amplitudes close to the Turing instability. This connects a dynamical symmetry to pattern selection, with possible relevance to biological and chemical pattern-forming phenomena.
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  5. Causal Specificity, Biological Possibility and Non-Parity About Genetic Causes.Marcel Weber - manuscript
    Several authors have used the notion of causal specificity in order to defend non-parity about genetic causes (Waters 2007, Woodward 2010, Weber 2017, forthcoming). Non-parity in this context is the idea that DNA and some other biomolecules that are often described as information-bearers by biologists play a unique role in life processes, an idea that has been challenged by Developmental Systems Theory (e.g., Oyama 2000). Indeed, it has proven to be quite difficult to state clearly what the alleged special role (...)
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  6. Контуры нового мирового порядка.Leonid Grinin - 2015 - Философия И Общество 3 (4):7-33.
    Мировой порядок как система определенных идей и правил, господ-ствующих в международной политике, стал формироваться в Европе начиная с XVI в., окончательно утвердившись в XIX столетии. Однако этот порядок держится обычно в пределах трех-четырех десятилетий, а затем под влиянием изменившихся обстоятельств и нового баланса сил меняется. В настоящее время мы как раз переживаем период смены ми-рового порядка и начала формирования новой его системы. В статье анализируется начало ослабления мирового порядка, основанного на американской гегемонии, рассматриваются характерные черты и методы, которые используют США (...)
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  7. A Developmental Systems Account of Human Nature.Karola Stotz & Paul Edmund Griffiths - 2018 - In Tim Lewens & Elizabeth Hannon (eds.), Why we disagree about human nature. Oxford & New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 00-00.
    It is now widely accepted that a scientifically credible conception of human nature must reject the folkbiological idea of a fixed, inner essence that makes us human. We argue here that to understand human nature is to understand the plastic process of human development and the diversity it produces. Drawing on the framework of developmental systems theory and the idea of developmental niche construction we argue that human nature is not embodied in only one input to development, such as the (...)
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  8. Developmental Systems Theory as a Process Theory.Paul Edmund Griffiths & Karola Stotz - 2018 - In Daniel J. Nicholson & John Dupre (eds.), Everything Flows: Towards a Processual Philosophy of Biology. Oxford & New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 225-245.
    Griffiths and Russell D. Gray (1994, 1997, 2001) have argued that the fundamental unit of analysis in developmental systems theory should be a process – the life cycle – and not a set of developmental resources and interactions between those resources. The key concepts of developmental systems theory, epigenesis and developmental dynamics, both also suggest a process view of the units of development. This chapter explores in more depth the features of developmental systems theory that favour treating processes as fundamental (...)
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  9. Which Kind of Causal Specificity Matters Biologically?Marcel Weber - 2017 - Philosophy of Science 84 (3):574-585.
    Griffiths et al. (2015) have proposed a quantitative measure of causal specificity and used it to assess various attempts to single out genetic causes as being causally more specific than other cellular mechanisms, for example, alternative splicing. Focusing in particular on developmental processes, they have identified a number of important challenges for this project. In this discussion note, I would like to show how these challenges can be met.
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  10. Programming the Emergence in Morphogenetically Architected Complex Systems.Franck Varenne, Pierre Chaigneau, Jean Petitot & René Doursat - 2015 - Acta Biotheoretica 63 (3):295-308.
    Large sets of elements interacting locally and producing specific architectures reliably form a category that transcends the usual dividing line between biological and engineered systems. We propose to call them morphogenetically architected complex systems (MACS). While taking the emergence of properties seriously, the notion of MACS enables at the same time the design (or “meta-design”) of operational means that allow controlling and even, paradoxically, programming this emergence. To demonstrate our claim, we first show that among all the self-organized systems studied (...)
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  11. Regeneration of Hydra From Aggregated Cells.Alfred Gierer, S. Berking, H. Bode, C. N. David, K. Flick, G. Hansmann, H. Schaller & E. Trenkner - 1972 - Nature New Biology 239:98-101.
    • Aggregates of previously isolated cells of Hydra are capable, under suitable solvant conditions, of regeneration forming complete animals. In a first stage, ecto- and endodermal cells sort out, producing the bilayered hollow structure characteristic of Hydra tissue; thereafter, heads are formed (even if the original cell preparation contained no head cells), eventually leading to the separation of normal animals with head, body column and foot. Hydra appears to be the highest type of organism that allows for regeneration of the (...)
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  12. Developmental Systems Theory.Paul Griffiths & Adam Hochman - 2015 - eLS:1-7.
    Developmental systems theory (DST) is a wholeheartedly epigenetic approach to development, inheritance and evolution. The developmental system of an organism is the entire matrix of resources that are needed to reproduce the life cycle. The range of developmental resources that are properly described as being inherited, and which are subject to natural selection, is far wider than has traditionally been allowed. Evolution acts on this extended set of developmental resources. From a developmental systems perspective, development does not proceed according to (...)
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